Summary of Awards to Date

Effect of temperature changes on gene expression during the first stages of Salmonella growth.

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Date

Oct. 1, 2006 - Sep. 1, 2009

Award Number

CCFRA Project 97002

Funding Agency

Center for Produce Safety

Investigator

Roy Betts, Ph.D.
CCFRA - Campden Chorleywood Food Research Association

Summary

Advances in molecular biology have allowed detailed studies to be undertaken on how micro-organisms react to various stresses during growth, and microbiologists are beginning to understand how, at a molecular level, certain micro-organisms react when growing in a changing environment. There is however very little known about how cells in a semi-dormant lag phase respond at a molecular level to their environment and to stresses contained within that environment. Whilst in lag phase the organism is not growing, and risks to the food product and consumer are not increasing. Once the organism begins to grow and multiply, the risk can increase very quickly with serious consequences. This project aims to research in detail at a molecular level, how microbial cells overcome the lag phase and enter a phase of growth. Within the study the response to food related stresses will also be studied to evaluate how the organism reacts to the stress, overcomes it and begins to grow. The focus of this work will be on the food pathogen Salmonella, and the work will involve the use of the latest DNA microarray technology, backed up with image analysis systems and flow cytometry.